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WRS does the epic Kirokot trail in Ranau

2nd July, 2018

THE WHISKEY RADIO SABAH FOUR WHEELS DRIVE CLUB (WRS4WD) set off for their annual expeditions two months ago when they explored the Kirokot jungle trail located at Ranau.

The leech-infested trail was about 38 kilometers in distance consisting of super hardcore routes from the starting point, going through oil palm estates and the district’s border surrounded by lustful green jungles.

The Kirokot trail was recced by Yap Nan Thien and Harry of Ranau who walked the trail and scouted by Leong Kuan Seng and Zino Leong Ting Ming along with Ade Adenan Ramdan and Ade Azlhan Ramdan of Danz Trail Gear who had to slightly change the original route to the route which came out at Kampung Waluhu.

The convoy was participated by 28 vehicles with 90 participants including two foreigners, Englishman Bob Mac Chesney and Scottish Kevin Mcconachie as well as two Sarawakians.

Fellow local off-road club, Borneo Toyota Hilux Community (HTLC) also took part in the convoy with five vehicles consisting of 14 club members where the expedition was their first taste of serious hardcore off-roading.

According to WRS President, Thompson Teo, the five-day expedition was initially planned for three days but was delayed after encountering tough terrains namely five rivers, several swamp crossings and seven gullies before a steep uphill climb about 7km long which required long hard winching all the way.

During the first day, the convoy met up at Lohan rest house where the first activity was a contribution handing over to Nursiah Kondopoh at Kampung Bongkud, a single parent with seven children whose house had burned down.

The convoy then proceeded past Kampung Narawang, Kampung Langsat and entered into a private oil palm plantation where after the hill crest, there was a heavily rutted downhill road called the roller-coaster driven in low first gear which was the most exciting part of the route before exiting into an oil palm estate.

There were several mechanical breakdowns encountered along the way including broken winch ropes, overheating, alternator failure but the most severe damage was sustained by Alvin Leong in his Toyota Land Cruiser which turned turtle at a narrow hill side crossing.

Boy Gary Damien suffered gearbox failure about 3km from the exit point which they needed to replace a new gearbox brought by the Sweeper Team in the middle of the jungle.

Thompson said that the grueling five-day expedition ended after completing about 38km in the jungle, however friendships and camaraderie was built throughout the convoy which was important for the local off-roading scene.

“If you ask any off-roader, what is it that they love the most of off-roading, they will tell you it’s the camaraderie, team working, and friendship among the participants,” he said.

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